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  • Writer's pictureThe Gimp

A Man Called Otto: Spoiler-Free Review

How do I give you a sense of what this Tom Hanks movie is without giving away half of the plot? Well, here goes nothing. For starters, if you thought his role as Colonel Tom Parker in the 2022 Baz Luhrmann film Elvis was his lowest point as a serious actor, this is definitely a comeback.

Having said that, this movie does borrow a lot from other films, like Clint Eastwood's Gran Torino and the Academy Award Nominated 1997 James L. Brooks movie As Good As It Gets. But it keeps enough of itself fresh that it's passable.

I've seen other reviews on YouTube that criticize the movie for being too melodramatic and "sappy," but as a disabled guy who just recent lost both parents and experienced a ton of other tragedies along the way, it's not unrealistic. If anything, it might be too much realism for some snowflakes, especially with COVID not even in the rear view mirror.

One thing I will tell you about the movie is that unlike the main protagonists in the previous films I've mentioned, Tom Hanks' Otto isn't racist or a bigot. He's just an asshole. But what the movie does very well is show you (thanks to Tom's youngest son Truman) why he's an asshole. He lives by the slogan "I'm not prejudiced: I hate everyone equally."

While there is obviously a level of predictability in these kinds of films, what I appreciate here is that Director Marc Forster (who should never be allowed near a James Bond movie ever again but does well here) and the books they were based on by Fredrik Backman and Hannes Holm switch a few things up and there are a few surprises. You might think you know where the movie is going if you saw the 2 other movies I've mentioned, but you have no idea.

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